ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (CBS4) – A nonprofit is coming together to help the homeless who have less than two weeks to leave their camps along the South Platte River in Englewood. Change the Trend has been trying to connect them with resources so they can end their cycle of homelessness.
Englewood police posted notices along the South Platte River saying the people who camp there would have to leave by June 3. Many of them felt upset and unwanted.
A woman, named Amanda, who has lived there for five years told CBS4’s Rick Salinger, “We’re going to still stay here. We don’t care. They could try to keep kicking us out but we don’t care. We’re not moving.”
Mark McIntosh, a spokesman for Change the Trend, says if they stay, they could be putting themselves in danger.
“We really believe that there could be maybe hundreds of lives at risk,” he said.
The collaborative effort working to help Englewood, Littleton, and Sheridan tackle the issue of homelessness. He says they have been out all week talking with the homeless.
Mark McIntosh (credit: CBS)
“We’re trying to work very closely with them so that those living on the streets, alleys and riverbanks understand that we’re here to help,” he said.
The city and their partners are just trying to protect not only the river, but also the people who live alongside it.
“When you have that many people living along the river, the ecological health of the river is really at risk,” Mark said. “The situation along the river has become pretty dangerous we’ve got record snowfall in the state of Colorado. Well eventually, most of that snow is going to melt. It’s going to come down the South Platte River and with all the crazy floods we have we’re just very concerned about the welfare of the people living along the river.”
They know how hard it can be to find help so that is why they will continue to go out to the camps — to let people know there are resources available to them.
“We can find them housing. We can find them employment and we can deal with their mental, physical and social needs.”
Mark says Change the Trend needs mentors to help homeless people get off the streets.